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10 June 21

Affinity Water are headline sponsors of the 2021 Groundswell event 23rd and 24th June 2021

Affinity water is pleased to announce that it is the headline sponsor of this years’ Groundswell event from the 23rd to 24th June 2021 and will be joining the list of distinguished speakers at the event.

More than 3,500 visitors will be welcomed back to Lannock Manor Farm, Hertfordshire to what is billed as a regenerative agriculture show which is focused on no-till farming techniques, soil regeneration and mixed farming systems.

The future of agriculture policy in the UK will be tackled head on with the Secretary of State, The Rt Hon George Eustice being interviewed by Baroness Rosie Boycott at Lannock Manor Farm, Hertfordshire.

Host Farmer John Cherry has thanked Affinity Water for its sponsorship: “We are particularly grateful to Affinity Water who have pledged their support by being headline sponsors for the event, it is so pleasing that they recognise all the benefits that good farming brings to the water cycle.”

Affinity Water’s Shaun Dowman, an agricultural advisor, with over 15 years’ experience of working within academia, environmental regulation and the water industry will be giving a joint demonstration with Anna Krzywoszynska, Faculty of Social Sciences Research Fellow and an Associate Director at the University of Sheffield Institute for Sustainable Food, and joint Host Farmer Paul Cherry.

Their demonstration will show: The dramatic effect of two inches of rainfall on soils under different management regimes: no-till and cultivated, with and without cover and under permanent pasture.

Shaun’s work has focused on how land management can influence the health and resilience of the UK’s waterways. As agricultural advisor for Affinity Water his work targets catchment solutions that help improve water quality and reduce reliance on water treatment. Using knowledge of land management and the aquatic environment he works with farmers to help safeguard drinking water catchments and enhance the farmed environment.

Shaun Dowman said: “As a water supply company operating in the south-east of England and the largest Water only company in the UK, we are proud to be the headline sponsor of Groundswell 2021. We are keen to promote farming practices that are beneficial for soil, water and the wider environment, themes we will be presenting at the Affinity Water catchment hub at the event”.

Entering its fifth year, The Groundswell event provides a forum for farmers’ and anyone interested in food production or the environment to learn about the theory and practical applications of Conservation Agriculture or regenerative systems, including no-till, cover crops and re-introducing livestock into the arable rotation, with a view to improving soil health.

With wide appeal across the food and farming spectrum, Groundswell is relevant for conventional, organic, livestock, arable, landowners or tenant farmers.

Groundswell was founded by the Cherry family five years ago on their mixed farm in Hertfordshire. John and Paul Cherry have farmed for thirty-one years, converting to a no-till system in 2010.

John Cherry explained: “We started Groundswell out of a sense of frustration that no-one was putting on a Summer Show to which we might want to go. Having gone down the no-till route, we realised that we only really needed a good seed drill and not a barn full of expensive cultivating equipment, so Cereals and all those Tillage events were a waste of our time. None of the lectures and very few of the exhibitors talked about the soil, let alone soil biology.

“With over 100 sessions taking place over the two days, attendees will hear from a wide range of voices in regenerative agriculture. Visitors will learn about 5 principles of regen ag and how they are interpreted and implemented by different practitioners. Leading soil scientists and innovative farmers will take to the stage to discuss how they are building organic matter and making their farming systems more resilient.“

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